María del Pilar Ferreira Romero ’21: Fundación Tierra de Esperanza

Name: María del Pilar Ferreira Romero
Class Year: 2021
Major: International Studies
Hometown: Lambaré, Paraguay

Internship Organization: Fundación Tierra de Esperanza
Job Title: Intern at Dirección de Investigación, Desarrollo e Innovación
Location: Concepción, Chile.

María del Pilar Ferreira Romero

What’s happening at your internship?

I am an intern at the Dirección de Investigación, Desarrollo e Innovación (DIDI), or Research Development and Innovation Direction in English. This department of Fundacion Tierra de Esperanza is in charge of managing and sharing data. As an intern, I am working on creating a systematization guideline that will allow the Fundación to keep a record of all the experiences from their projects. In this way, good practices that worked for one project could be applied to other projects.

Additionally, I am also learning about the different projects that the Fundación has in four main areas: Education, Substance Abuse, Juvenile Justice, and Human Rights. The work the Fundacion does in Chile is impressive and I am eager to keep learning in the weeks that I have left!

Why did you apply for this internship?

One day, I received an email with a new internship that was going to take place in Chile with an organization that works with children. It was a pilot program created by the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research and Fundación Tierra de Esperanza for undergraduates and graduates students. When I read about the work that the Fundación does in Chile, I knew that it would be the place where I could learn about the use of data for the creation of programs that address pressing issues in society. Furthermore, this pilot program appeared as a unique opportunity to work in a city and a country that would challenge me and expose me to different realities in the international context.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

My favorite part so far has been the people at the Fundacion. Everyone received me with arms wide open and with a desire to teach and share with me all the knowledge they have. They have been extremely helpful during my immersion into the Fundacion to understand the acronyms, programs, and many other things. Moreover, they are also showing me the best of Chile. Everyone at the Fundación tells me what I have to visit, what dishes I have to try, and have even invited me to some cultural events in the cosmopolitan city that Concepción is. They have all been really friendly and accessible to teach me things that I have to learn, and to make sure that I have the very best time here in Chile.





Living in a new city? What has that experience been like for you?

Living in a new city has been fun and entertaining. I am living in a hotel, which means that I have all the commodities that it offers and can eat out almost every day. Concepción is a walkable city, and my hotel is in downtown. Therefore, I can walk almost everywhere.
The city of Concepcion has many museums, theaters, and other cultural places that I have yet to visit. There is so much history in this city and I am learning something every day. There are so many places to know here in Concepcion, and in the surrounding cities. Furthermore, the landscapes that it offers are also delightful. During my time here, I have seen some marvelous sunsets that decorate the beautiful hills that Concepcion has. I am excited to keep exploring and learning more about this historical city!



Kameice Francis ’20: Phuhlisani NPC

Name: Kameice Francis
Class Year: 2020
Major: International Studies and Growth and Structure of Cities
Hometown: St. Thomas, Jamaica

Internship Organization: Phuhlisani NPC
Job Title: Research Intern
Location: Cape Town, South Africa

What’s happening at your internship?

This week I finished profiling researchers for Phuhlisani’s website, Based on a list of of organizations that I was given on my first day, I profiled research institutes and Non-governmental organizations that specialize in rural and urban land issues in South Africa. This was done via a Google Form. I also provided links to full-text research studies that covered different aspects of the land issues including masters and doctoral theses, research reports and policy briefs that were available from the organizations. I have started transferring data from the spreadsheet that I created with organizational profiles to Trello so that the information is accessible to the public until Phuhlisani is able to add it to their website.


Why did you apply for this internship?

I applied for this internship because I am interested in urban and regional planning and this internship has exposed me to a new area of that field. I also had never traveled to South Africa and I was excited to be able to travel to another part of the world. I also got the opportunity to speak to my supervisor before applying and I really enjoyed the conversation and I wanted to learn more about his field of expertise.

Living in a new city? What has that experience been like for you?

I have really been enjoying living in another city. It’s been a little colder than I had expected but I have learned to adjust. I have also been able to try a myriad of new foods and visited many new places. I particularly like walking around Cape Town and trying to discover as many places as possible.

Can you give us three adjectives and three nouns that describe your internship experience?

Nouns: Passion, Adventure, Confusion

Adjectives: Eye-Opening, Frustrating, Heart-Warming

Janina Calle ’21: ACLU of Pennsylvania

Name: Janina Calle
Class Year: 2021
Major: International Studies
Hometown: Trenton, N.J.

Internship Organization: ACLU-PA
Job Title: Legal Intake Intern/Immigration Intern
Location: Philadelphia

What’s happening at your internship?

For the past few months I have been able to do both collaborative and meaningful work with community members and the staff at the ACLU of Pennsylvania. My work has consisted of reviewing intake that is sent to us either through letters, voicemails, or e-complaints, as well as working with Vanessa, the immigration fellow. As an intake intern, I have been able to review complaints that have been submitted to us from a plethora of people facing various issues. I have been trained to provide the best referrals for those cases in which we are unable to support. There have been a few complaints that have come my way that have led to further investigation given their high priority in regard to civil issues being violated. With Vanessa, I have done a lot more personal work that involves speaking with predominately Spanish-speaking people to receive their report on what occurred during police or even ICE interactions in the state of Pennsylvania. In addition, this summer a suit has been released against the Pennsylvania State Police for illegally enforcing immigration law, which has given me a glimpse into how the ACLU-PA uses its resources to gather information and ultimately decide which cases to take on. During the press release for the suit against the state police, I was able to travel to Harrisburg to further assist Vanessa and hear some of the clients on the case talk about their experience.

Why did you apply for this internship?

The opportunity to work with the ACLU presented itself through the Career & Civic Engagement Center as one of the organizations they were collaborating with. Given that I was already working with the ACLU-PA during the spring semester through my praxis course with Professor Martin, which focused on promoting change through service, it seemed fitting to continue my work with them. The amazing team I was able to meet and work with during that spring semester, also made it easy for me to choose working with them this summer.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

My favorite part of this internship has been able to see how different departments within the ACLU-PA office work separately and together at the same time. With such a large national nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, I have learned that each affiliate focuses on issues that their state is dealing with, which ultimately allows each office to cater to its community. In addition, because I was able to work with the legal fellow I was able to do work surrounding some cases that involved Spanish-speaking clients who faced some discrimination from a government agency, either a police department, ICE or sometimes both. This specific interaction and work was most impactful for me because I felt like I was working to abet issues that my parents could’ve also been faced with.

Can you talk about the skills you are learning and why they are important to you?

One of the major skills I was forced to reinforce in my daily work consisted of effectively communicating with not only my supervisors but with other interns as well. During the moments I was doing intake work, it was vital to inform the other interns about whose case I was reviewing, since we were all working under the same database. In addition, I learned to seek out their help when I had a question or was stuck with providing a referral. Without this skill, there would have definitely been double the work to do.

Ameesha Dugal ’20: Universidad de Autonoma, Chile

Name: Ameesha Dugal
Class Year: 2020
Major: International Studies
Hometown: Ridgefield, CT

Internship Organization: Universidad de Autonoma
Job Title: Marketing Intern for the International Relations Office
Location: Santiago, Chile

What’s happening at your internship?

I work at the International Relations office in the Universidad de Autonoma in Santiago, Chile. I work directly under a boss, mostly as her assistant. I assist in translating documents among other things to fluid English, working on marketing strategies to market the university to student internationally, and also work with integrating new students into the university.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I applied for this internship because I desperately wanted to have an abroad experience. I also applied for it because it was fully funded through Bryn Mawr, and I knew opportunities like that are once in a lifetime. I knew that if I got it, I would have the full support of the BMC staff as well as the IES staff to help me be successful.

Was there anything special about how you found this internship?

I was able to gain access to this opportunity through Bryn Mawr’s CPD (Career and Professional Development Program). Bryn Mawr sponsors two students every year for this program for a fully funded experience with IES abroad. I picked Santiago, Chile as my internship location because I have been interested in Latinx culture for about a year now. I listen to reggaeton — Latin hip-hop/rap music — and dabble in some Latin TV on Netflix. On top of that, I took a year of Spanish as a freshman. When I learned I got the opportunity, I had to take it. I was determined to immerse myself in as much as possible, and grow as much as possible in every way.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

The first week of my program, I was able to participate in an international fair hosted at one of the campuses of my university in a barrio in Chile. It was a nightmare getting there myself. I had just arrived in the country, and I did not know anything. I eventually got there two hours late. My boss was understanding and supportive. I realized the work climate in Chile is more relaxed and sociable compared to the States. It is almost like your work environment is your second home. I interacted with so many Chileans and foreigners that day. By the end of it I felt comfortable and confident. I went out of my comfort zone socially and emotionally. I became so comfortable with trying to speak Spanish to people who knew it perfectly. I remember myself changing from a shy, timid girl, to one who started conversation and laughed freely! Overall, I know that experience was instrumental in my adjustment to Chile and shaping my perspective for interning abroad.

I think this internship complements my International studies major. I am able add the politics, culture, and language, I immersed myself in, in Chile, to my greater understanding of society, the international political economy, and international interactions. When I go back to class in the fall, I know I can apply my personal experience to concepts I will be reading about. I definitely recommend students to apply for the IES internship through CPD, especially Spanish, political science, sociology, and IS majors — as these are directly paralleled to an abroad experience! Immersing yourself in a foreign country can enhance one’s understanding of these fields on so many levels!